Too Much Chemical Byproduct in the Des Moines Area Water Supply

Blog, Health

The recent information that has come to light about excess amounts of trihalomethanes (THM) in the Des Moines water supply is a cause for concern for many people. In a report from Des Moines Water Works, the reason behind the elevated trihalomethane levels is that additional levels of chlorine was required to combat the higher amounts of ammonia: “During the first quarter of 2014, Des Moines Water Works saw elevated levels of ammonia and Total Organic Carbon in both the Des Moines and Raccoon Rivers. Disinfection with chlorine is more difficult when ammonia is present in source waters. Ammonia consumes chlorine, leaving it unavailable for disinfection against bacteria, viruses, and other disease-causing organisms. This requires additional chlorine to eliminate the ammonia and obtain proper disinfection during the final stage of treatment. For that reason, chlorine levels have been purposefully higher since early January. Elevated levels of Total Organic Carbon, at a time when chlorine is being dosed aggressively, enables the formation of the undesirable disinfection by-products.”

What are the Health Effects of Trihalomethanes?

Byproducts of the interaction of chlorine and organic matter present in water, trihalomethanes (THMs) may pose an increased risk of cancer for people exposed to them. According to a University of Florida report, two THMs, chloroform and dibromochloromethane, are carcinogens and another THM, bromodichloromethane, is a carcinogen and mutagen. Mutagens alters DNA, and are thought to affect the genetics of future generations. A California study indicates that THMs may cause reproductive problems and miscarriage. The study discovered a miscarriage rate of 15.7 percent for women who drank five or more glasses of cold water containing more than 0.075 mg/l of THMs, compared to a miscarriage rate of 9.5 percent for women with low THM exposure. Besides these particular risks, trihalomethanes are also linked to bladder cancer, lung, kidney, liver, heart, and central nervous system damage.

Crystal Clear Bottled Water Uses a Different Method of Sterilization

Rather than using chlorine to sterilize water, Crystal Clear Bottled Water uses ozone to safely and efficiently ensure there is no biological contamination to the water we distribute.
Commonly found in nature, ozone is formed whenever lightning strikes or when an electrical discharge creates a spark. Ozone is second only to fluorine as the most powerful oxidant and it inactivates and oxidizes organic metals and most organisms faster than chlorine. Crystal Clear Bottled Water believes in using ozone for these very reasons, and also because it breaks down into oxygen after it is in the bottle.

Removal of Trihalomethanes

Trihalomethanes are very difficult to remove and require long contact times with special carbon beds for adequate removal. Brita filters, fridge filters, or small water bottle filters will not remove trihalomethanes from the water. Even a quality reverse osmosis systems will generally not remove all of them, they should be reduced after treatment but, not completely removed.

Simplify Your Drinking Water Experience

Take away the concern of not knowing what is in your water with our proven track record of providing the best quality water. The simple and health-centric option would be to begin service with Crystal Clear Bottled Water. With us you can always be confident that you and your family will have the cleanest, healthiest water available.